Shiba Screaming: Why Shiba Screams & What To Do About It

Shiba Scream
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Shiba Screaming: Why Shiba Screams? Most dogs usually vocalize by barking or whining. But, for the Shiba Inu, vocalization or expressing their emotions mean screaming. You will occasionally hear a Shiba Inu make a loud and shrilling sound when she wants to communicate with you and let you know that she is anxious, agitated, or excited.

When adopting a Shiba Inu, one of the first things an experienced Shiba Inu owner will tell you is that it is a dog that screams instead of barks. The Shiba Inu dog’s high-pitched scream is one of the quirks that this breed is known for and it is a sound that will either make you laugh or test your tolerance for loudness. 

Shiba Inus, in general, are not heavy barkers. They are for the most part quiet canine companions so you’ll never have to worry about do dogs get tired of barking or disturbing your neighbors’ peace. In this article, we will tackle the various reasons why your Shiba Inu would sometimes let out a petrifying scream.

What is the Shiba Scream? 

We all associate dogs with barking instead of screaming. So, what is a Shiba Inu Scream and why do they do it? A Sheba Scream is a combination of a bark, a whine, and a howl let out by a Shiba Inu whenever she wants to communicate something.

It is her version of a bark that closely resembles the sound most wolves make. It is said that Shiba Inus are more closely related to the gray wolves, the ancient ancestors of today’s domesticated dogs, that they still retain some of the wolf’s traits.

What does a Shiba Inu Scream sound like? 

The Shiba Inu Scream sound is one you will never forget. It is a shrilling noise that is part howling, whining, growling, and barking.

There are also a variety of Shiba Inu noises you will hear, like yodeling, grunting, grumbling, and even a whistling sound. A similar dog breed that makes the same kind of noises is the Siberian Husky.

Below is a Shiba Inu Scream off video. While their owners were away, the at-home video camera recorded the father Shiba screaming as well as the Shiba Inu puppies screaming in the background.

Generally, do Shiba Inu Scream a lot? 

Shiba Inus are typically a quiet breed. They only scream or bark when they sense danger, feel anxious, or play excitedly with their family.

Why Do Shiba Inus Scream? 

A first-time owner of a Shiba Inu may ask, “why does my Shiba Inu scream?”

There are several reasons why Shiba Inu scream and trying to control it may be the most challenging part a Shiba Inu owner may face.

A screaming Shiba Inu may rattle some but the most common causes are excitement, anxiety, fear, and irritation.

RECOMMENDED: Do Shiba Inu and Chihuahua Mix scream or bark a lot? Check out Shiba Inu Chihuahua Mix (Complete Guide) to find out.

Dogs that Scream: Shiba Inu a Basal dog breed

The Shiba Inu is considered one of the basal dog breeds, meaning they are closer genetically to the ancient dog breeds and wolves. Their DNA is found to be less mixed than most modern dog breeds, like the German Shepherd, Golden Retriever, or the Jack Russell Terrier, whose genetic histories are so shrouded for their origins to be truly known. 

The Shiba Inu, just like the Basenji, Akita, or the Finnish spitz, is found to be geographically isolated and subjected to less crossbreeding over the years that their close relation to the ancient dog breeds remains intact.

Here is another video of a Shiba screaming out of excitement and happiness to see his owner.

Can a Shiba Scream and howl?

Yes, it is not uncommon to hear a Shiba Inu scream and howl at the same time. Shiba Inus usually howl when they hear a high-pitched sound, like an alarm or a musical instrument. 

Do Shiba Inus bark?

Shiba Inus are often described as cat-like with their aloof and independent behavior and are sometimes mistaken for being a barkless dogs like the Basenji. That is why many people wonder does Shiba Inu bark. 

Shiba bark only occasionally. Shiba Inus would rather let out a hysterical scream. A Shiba bark sounds sharp and abrupt like most dogs which is different from the Shiba scream which sounds more like a cry. Their bark is brought about by their territorial nature or when they are alerted by outside noises.

This makes the Shiba Inu a relatively reliable watchdog that can alert you of any intruders. They are not good though at protecting you by attacking another person who he deems dangerous.

In fact, Shiba Inus are bred to be hunters rather than protectors.

Shiba Screaming: 6 Main Reasons 

Shibas are not really very vocal. They only scream if there’s a reason to.

Below are the six (6) main reasons why your Shiba Inu calm then Screams all of a sudden. If you’re short on time, here is a video of every Shiba Inu sound in under two minutes:

1. Happy 

Shiba Inu Scream
Shiba Inu happy Scream

Did you just get back home from work or perhaps from a long trip? Don’t be surprised if you hear your furry friend screaming because a Shiba Inu happy Scream is her way of welcoming you.

Screaming happily is also your Shiba’s way of inviting you to play and have some bonding time with her.

When she’s excited, you’ll also hear your Shiba Inu funny Scream.

2. Attention 

Shiba Inus are well known for their separation anxiety issues. If your Shiba can sense that you are about to leave the house, it is quite common to hear your Shiba Inu cry as a way of getting your attention, and hopefully, you will not leave her alone by herself. 

3. Fear 

Shiba Inus can be quite dramatic when they are afraid of something, vet trips in particular. It’s not uncommon to see a crying Shiba inside a vet clinic, especially when it’s time for vaccinations. 

4. Lack of Socialization 

If you fail to introduce your Shiba to pets, animals, or other people at a tender age, it is possible that she will scream each time she meets new faces and animals.

A Shiba Inu crying for no reason at all is a clear sign of insecurity. She feels threatened, thus, she cries as a way of asking you for help. 

5. Upset 

A Shiba Inu is an independent-minded dog. She does not want to be ordered around, so if she does not like to take a bath but you force her to, expect a lot of screaming. If you place her in a crate but she does not want to, she’d scream her heart out to relay her displeasure. 

Helpful guide: How to Crate Train A Puppy in 6 Steps

6. Basal Breed

Shiba Inus are considered one of the basal dog breeds, meaning, they are ancient dogs from which the modern dogs that we know today may have originated.

The Scream that a Shiba Inu is making can be traced back to their ancestors in the wild. They scream to mark their territories and to signal the coming of enemies.

That said, that Shiba Inu scream is an inherited form of communication. 

Shiba Screams during grooming sessions 

Shiba Inus that are not used to being handled, especially by a dog groomer, can scream very loud as a way of ‘rebellion’ from being groomed. This is the reason why a Shiba Inu Screaming at groomer is not an unusual occurrence in a dog grooming salon.

A groomer is an unfamiliar person so no matter how nice he or she is, a Shiba can scream out of fear of the dog groomer. 

Also, unlike Golden Retrievers, Shiba Inus are not fond of water, they hate bath time, thus, a Shiba Inu Scream bath is quite common to hear while they are being cleaned. Regardless of where the Shiba is being bathed, be it at home or in a grooming salon, it is possible to hear Shiba Inu bath Scream out of displeasure. 

If you’re wearing your earphones, we highly recommend that you take them off before playing this video. Your ears will thank you.

Here is a video of a Shiba Inu Screaming at PetSmart:

Shiba Inu Screaming during vet visits

Most dogs, including Shiba Inus, hate going to the vet clinic. This is why if a Shiba Inu is at the vet clinic, you can hear the Shiba Inu Scream vet while being examined.

One reason why Shiba Inu Scream at vet is out of fear. She has no idea what procedure will be done to her, thus, it is possible to hear a Shiba Inu vet Scream.

Second, it is possible that the procedure is painful and this is why a Shiba Inu Screams at vet.

Moreover, a Shiba Inu is not an affectionate dog, thus she does not enjoy getting handled by someone, more so if it’s a vet. Thus, a dog Screaming at vet Shiba Inu is quite common. 

But, it’s not bad all the time, especially if the Shiba Inu has pleasant experiences in the vet clinic. It’s possible that a Shiba Inu is excited to see her vet again, thus, a Shiba Inu Screaming at vet may be her way of saying, “good to see you again, doc.” 

Screaming Shiba Inu in car

Shiba Screams
Screaming Shiba Inu in car

Most dogs like riding in the car and placing their heads near the window to feel the windy breeze.

But, some dread it like crazy because of the anxiety of being trapped inside a vehicle for a long time or having motion sickness. This may pose a problem if you want a relaxing drive while your Shiba Inu scream in car.

There are some things you can do to avoid your Shiba Inu screaming in car.

First, invest in a dog car seat. This not only provides security and protection from sudden stops but also provides support and comfort for your Shiba Inu during a car ride.

Another suggestion to avoid your Shiba Inu in car screaming is to give him a toy or blanket that has the familiar smell of your home. This will keep him calm and make him feel right at home in your car. 

It is also recommended that you make a few stops during long car rides especially if your dog is prone to motion sickness. Keep the temperature cool inside the car.

It is also advisable to keep the car seat facing forward. You can also give some motion sickness medication to prevent your Shiba Inu scream car rides.

To get your Shiba Inu used to car rides, take him for short drives while she is still young. This will keep your furry friend from getting restless by wanting to move around a lot. You can also use rewards to let her know that going for a drive is a positive thing.

Taking some of these precautions will give you less stress and distraction and ensure that your Shiba Inu will not disturb you while driving.

Shiba Inu Screams: Why training & socializing your Shiba Inu during puppyhood is crucial

Training your puppy at a young age is important because it will be the foundation of how your four-legged friends will behave in adulthood.

Since Shiba Inu is on the aloof side, you can train her to be more sociable by exposing her to pets and new faces so as to prevent fear and anxiety, the signs of which are screaming.

Also, make it known to your K9 friend that you are the leader and not her, lest, you’d have a hard time disciplining her in the future. 

Don’t let your Shiba dog Scream or Shiba Inu whine get out of control

A Shiba Inu can dominate you if you fail to control her whining behaviors. If she senses that she can be the alpha of the pack, she will not listen to your commands and that can spell disaster and an increase in bad behaviors like acting out. 

How to stop Shiba Scream

The best way to stop a Shiba from screaming is through early socialization, familiarization, and training. For puppies, let them get used to getting groomed (e.g. bathing and nail trimming), car rides, and a trip to the vet clinic.

Do these activities gradually and be sure to give your Shiba Inu positive reinforcements if she doesn’t scream at all. Expose your Shiba to strangers and other animals or pets so she will realize that there is nothing to fear. 

Screaming Shiba? Final thoughts

Shiba Inu Shiba Scream is one of the adorable behaviors of this breed and getting used to it might test your patience.

Shiba Inus communicate uniquely and this always brings smiles to many owners.

As long as you know how to avoid and control the Shiba Inu screams from getting too excessive, the rewards of adopting such a dog outweigh the negatives.

Related Questions

Are Shibas vocal?

No, Shiba Inus actually belong to the category of the quietest dog breeds. They are only vocal in certain circumstances like having unfamiliar people and pets around the house. Some Shibas convey their hunger by being vocal, too. 

What dog screams instead of barks?

Aside from Shiba Inus, some small dog breeds tend to be yappy to the point that they sound like they’re screaming. Some dog owners of Maltichons and even Shiz Tzus have reported that their pooches scream instead of bark when excited.

The same is true for Siberian Huskies whose sound can be compared with the sounds produced by Shiba Inus.

Why do Shiba Inu Howl?

One way that Shiba Inus communicate with their fellow Shiba Inus is through howling. They howl as a way of letting the others know that they own a certain spot and they’d better back off. In short, howling is a form of territorial marking.

Are Shibas noisy?

No, Shiba Inus are relatively quiet dogs. They only bark when they sense that there is someone knocking at the door or there are other pets within the vicinity. They also get noisy when they are excited, anxious, or in pain.

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